The Secret of God's Banker

Aiden Leonardo Book 3

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Pub Date 14 Jul 2023 | Archive Date 03 Jul 2023

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Detective Angelo Marquez, of the Chicago PD, arrives at The Cathedral of Saint Thomas Aquinas where he has tracked Father Francesco, a prime suspect in the theft of an ancient relic stolen from the Vatican Private Archives. Concurrently, Detective Ann Polities of DuPage County’s M.E.R.I.T. arrives as the hostage negotiator that Father Francesco demanded to have on-scene, lest he detonate an incendiary and bring down the cathedral, killing everyone inside.

As she endeavors to convince Father Francesco to free the hostages, he agrees to release them on the condition that she meet with him in person. Adding the encrypted statement, “Mordechai sits at the palace gate,” which raises a red flag for Angelo that Ann dismisses in order to secure the hostages. But upon entering the cathedral, the bomb is detonated, and Ann is knocked unconscious and transported to Central DuPage Hospital.

When Angelo arrives at the hospital, he discovers that the F.B.I. suspects her involvement in the bombing and plans to question her when she regains consciousness. Curious about why Father Francesco had insisted on her presence at the cathedral, Angelo convinces Ann to flee the hospital in order to prove her innocence and find the priest.

Upon arriving at Nagi’s home a few miles away, Angelo reveals the clues left in place of the stolen relic. The coded message and symbol immediately get Nagi’s attention before local law enforcement converge on his home. Together, the three embark on a perilous quest throughout Chicago and its suburbs to locate Father Francesco and recover what he has stolen.

Unraveling clue after clue left for them to find, Angelo and Ann soon discover dark secrets about the Church of Rome that numerous entities will go to great lengths to protect, including a forty-year-old murder of a banker in possession of one of the Church’s most dangerous relics. The shocking truth they uncover reveals what no one is ready to believe…and brings an old enemy out of the shadows.

Detective Angelo Marquez, of the Chicago PD, arrives at The Cathedral of Saint Thomas Aquinas where he has tracked Father Francesco, a prime suspect in the theft of an ancient relic stolen from the...

Advance Praise

"Perfect for Dan Brown fans!" `Publishers Weekly on The Secret of Scripture (book 2)

"Perfect for Dan Brown fans!" `Publishers Weekly on The Secret of Scripture (book 2)

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The Secret of God's Banker had my attention from the very beginning. The key players were Ann Polites and Angelo Marquez. Father Francesco played a key role as well. Ann was a SWAT team member and Angelo was detective with the Chicago PD. The story opens with Ann at a cathedral where Father Francesco had hostages. Father Francesco has specifically requested Ann's presence. Angelo showed up at the cathedral because he was following a lead in order to locate father Francesco. So the father told Ann to come to where he was with the hostages. He told her that if she came, he would release the hostages. When she arrived there was an explosion. She ended up in the hospital.

There was a report that went out over the airways that Ann might have been partially responsible for the explosion. Angelo went to the hospital to see Ann, but was not allowed entrance. He went to the cantina where he overheard FBI agents talking about Ann and her possible connection to the explosion. He created a diversion and was able to get into Ann's room and kidnap her. He took her to a friend's house and that's where the excitement begins. Of course, because of the kidnapping that made Angelo and Ann wanted by the FBI.

It was believed that father Francesco had stolen and artifact from the Vatican. That's why Angelo was looking for him. Father Francesco would give Ann clues and Angelo's friend, Nagi, would decipher them. The clues were biblical in nature and Nagi was an expert when it came to religion.

There were several people after Ann and Angelo. There was a dirty supervisor and a dirty FBI agent who wanted them dead. The dirty FBI agent had placed incriminating evidence in Ann's house so when her house was searched it was found. I found it problematic that there were so many people after them. Anyway, the clues led them all over Chicago. At one point they were sent to Al Capone's house where all hell broke loose. The dirty supervisor had hired thugs to take them out. The thugs fired up the house with bullets but Ann and Angelo were able to escape and the thugs were killed.

Father Francesco was in search of the archbishop who had raised him. The clues he was giving to Ann were in hopes that she would lead him to the archbishop. And that's exactly what happened. One of the clues led them to the Greek Orthodox Church which is where the archbishop had sought. refuge. Father Francesco wanted to kill him because he believed that he had something to do with his father's death. It wasn't true, but that's what he believed. So Father Francesco showed up at the Greek Orthodox church. When he confronted the archbishop, he told him the truth about his father's death. But Father Francesca do not believe him. Ann and Angelo would not allow the father to kill him. The man who was tasked with killing Father Francesco was Valerio and he showed up at the church as well. He shot Father Francesco between the eyes.

They are still in search of the artifact and Valerio gave them a clue. They ended up at the Baha'i Center. Valerio showed up and dropped them another hint. The FBI had been tracking them using Angelo's cell phone. So they showed up at the Baha'i Center as well. After Valerio gave them the clue, he escaped. He went through the Center and escaped out a side door. The FBI was there and told him to stop. First. He tried to run but then the FBI agent fired a warning shot and he stopped. The FBI agent told him to turn around, which Valerio did. He reached inside his shirt and pulled a gun and the FBI agent shot him dead.

There were lots and lots of twists and turns in this story and I enjoyed following them. I didn't like the way the story ended though because it left a lot of loose ends. But all in all it was a very good book. And by the way, God's banker was father Francesco's father. I would recommend this book for book club. I gave it five stars.

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